Raiders heading for ‘unknown territory’

RAIDERS chairman Charles McHugh said Guernsey’s main rugby club are ‘progressing into unknown territory’ when it comes to finances.

Younger audience: Jordan Reynolds addresses the Elizabeth College Rugby 1st XV at Footes Lane under the lights. (Picture by Martin Gray, 28811157)
Younger audience: Jordan Reynolds addresses the Elizabeth College Rugby 1st XV at Footes Lane under the lights. (Picture by Martin Gray, 28811157)

Hit by the RFU’s withdrawal of a £115k grant, Raiders face the prospect of a season without income, which largely comes from the staging of home fixtures.

‘It’s a real problem for us and we don’t quite know where we are going yet,’ said McHugh, adding while it was melodramatic to say they have a ‘battle to stay alive’, they will definitely have to ‘go back to the drawing board’ in terms of covering their substantial financial deficit.

‘Missing home games is our biggest problem.

‘Each home game provides us with about £10k of income and each away game £2.5-3k in costs.

‘We are facing a more prolonged and deeper financial issue than we envisaged we would.’

With the worsening Covid-19 situation and restrictions in the UK, both McHugh and head coach Jordan Reynolds seem resigned to a largely idle Raiders season.

Asked whether he thought their National Two campaign would fail to get of the ground, he said: ‘I’d say it is pretty close to that.’

‘They [the RFU] are still holding on for a January start, but I can’t see it.’

This Saturday Raiders play the second of their in-house Test series matches with Buccaneers pitted against the Corsairs, but Reynolds admits there is not a lot they can do beyond the three-match series.

‘We’ve enjoyed it – these Tests – a bit of fun.

‘We will play to the end of November and then give the lads a decent break, give them December and January off and then see what we can do.’

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